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The Earliest Printed Charts of Long Island Sound,
& the Hudson & Connecticut Rivers
New York/ Long Island/ Connecticut.
VAN KEULEN, J. [Amsterdam, 1687]
Pas-Kaart Vande Zee Kusten van Niew Nederland...
20 ¼ x 22 inches
Fine hand color; tape stains in upper margins primarily, else excellent condition.
A very attractive example of the earliest obtainable sea chart to focus on New York Harbor, Long Island Sound and its associated coastlines. It was preceded in this regard only by the extremely rare Roggeveen chart of 1675. However, van Keulen’s chart (and not the Roggeveen) contains the first separate charts of both the Hudson and Connecticut rivers, which appear in insets above the main chart. This is the very scarce second state of the chart; it is generally seen on the market in the third and fourth states.
The chart’s place names and configurations are almost entirely Dutch in origin, except along the Connecticut coast and in eastern Long Island. While English settlements are shown in these areas, no regional English place names appear. The chart is thus important for preserving the original Dutch place names in the area, many of which have fallen out of use. "The map is important because of the inclusion of many names not occurring on other maps, as well as for its large scale inset map of the Hudson River, which is believed to be the first detailed engraved map of that river" (Stokes). Shelter Island is both shown and named on the chart, possibly for the first time.
The map is an excellent record of the earliest Dutch and English settlements along the Connecticut shoreline and in the New York City area ("Breukelen," "Hopoghan," "Ooyster Bay," "Tapaan.") The fort and settlements are shown on Manhattan, but a large, fictional bay appears on the West Side along the Hudson River.
The chart has curious imbalances in terms of overall accuracy. Long Island is surprising misshapen for the period, yet Martha's Vineyard and Nantucket, which had heretofore been poorly mapped, are both correctly named and, relatively speaking, in correct proportion to each other as to size.
Burden II, no. 587, state 2 Stokes, I.N.P. Iconography of Manhattan, Vol. II, pp. 158-9; Deak, G.G. Picturing America, #68.